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by: Casey Winslow
Saturday, 14 April 2012
10:02 a.m.

The meeting with Ianto had finally been rescheduled. He wasn't sure if they were just passing as shadows in the night with their own missions and attempts to organize what they had agreed upon, if Ianto had entertained second thoughts for a bit, or if he had been mad at him for missing their original meeting date despite the fact he had explained it had been due to splinching, but at least it was rescheduled. Three weeks was surely not too bad, though.

Casey was just nervous but he supposed that was normal. He knew what it had been like to be on Evie's bad side back in the day. He couldn't imagine if she managed to find them out in their plots and plans. He just hoped she didn't find out. They desperately needed to move things forward. This had been dragging on far too long as he and Ianto had agreed a month ago, and Evie might want to wait to pull everything at once, but honestly, what was the likelihood she was going to get that now? Trevor had abdicated and disappeared. No one had seen him for at least three months.

Casey found himself at the warehouse around 10:00 a.m. figuring he may as well let Seren and Lucy know what was going on so they could prepare themselves to move shop. After all, he knew Lucy wanted to help and had been preparing to be a healer on the field, but he wasn't leaving Seren behind either to potentially suffer Evie's wrath when the news reached her. And it would reach her.

Casey poked his head through the door after a moment and looked around. It was empty and quiet at first glance, though further inspection revealed Lucy lying down on the couch reading a book. She sat up at the sound of the door and looked over to him with a smile and a wave.

She stood and met him halfway to give him a hug. "Missed you."

"You too," he replied before breaking their embrace. "Where's Seren? We need to talk."

Lucy nodded, her face a bit concerned but she motioned him as she led him back to where she'd last seen Seren. She called out from a few feet away. "Seren? Casey's here."
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by: Seren Weavers
Three drops of holly oil... One of moondew... Three turns anti-clockwise and....

It was green. Green. Her bruise reduction potion was green. It was supposed to me cream. Why was it green?

Seren puffed out her frustration, strands of her flapping around her face. She really wasn't very good at this was she..? Perhaps that's what happened when you only had six months of official schooling. Perhaps Isis should count itself lucky it wasn't on fire yet, Seren with a wand was hardly what should be called safe. Lucy was doing her best to teacher her but there was only one of her and she had so many other responsibilities... They were all doing their best.

Their best, yet the cream potion was green!

"Stupid potion..." Seren glared at it like it had committed a personal grievance against her and tugged the little pot of the enchanted stove.
With a pouty glare she sat back on her knees, quite ready to huff like a child for a while when she heard her name being called.
Her head whipped around, glare replaced with a smile at the news. Casey was here? The smile turned to a grin as she scrambled to her feet.
"Casey!" Seren stepped passed Lucy (who she'd already seen this morning so didn't feel so bad about ignoring) and fired herself at the older man for a hug.
"You didn't send word?"
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by: Casey Winslow
Casey came to stand in the doorway after Lucy stopped, smiling slightly at the sight of Seren. She had grown so much from what he could tell. Perhaps physically she was about the same height, but the way she carried herself, even daring to be angry at whatever it was that seemed to be upsetting? That was new, and it was good. He only hoped she wouldn't be upset at what he was about to ask of her and Lucy. Lucy knew it would be coming up. He wasn't certain how much she'd told Seren.

Still, the thought was shoved away for the moment as Seren spotted him and greeted him excitedly. Casey returned the hug tightly and pursed his lips to fight the grin and impending chuckle at Lucy's mock indignation. The chuckle wasn't held back for long though differently directed as he let go so he could look at Seren. "I didn't know what time I'd get in," he told her. It was true. He hadn't been sure how long he would take risking the trip or if he'd have anyone else in tow from the get-go. As it was, he had a bit of time to kill and figured he may as well visit and get everything worked out between the two women. He was sure Lucy would be a mixture of nervous and excited. After all, she'd get to see her daughter, but she'd also soon be finding out if the government had been simply using her husband as a lure or if he was more likely dead. Casey felt apprehensive on that front as well. Sam was his cousin.

"How've you been? I see Lucy's been putting you to work. You slave driver, you!"

Lucy snorted. "Hey!"
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by: Seren Weavers
The hug was nice. 'Nice' seemed like a word which was lacking somehow, as if it was enough. Casey was her hero, a man she'd put on her pedestal who (at least in her eyes) could do no wrong.
... Maybe Lucy wasn't as out there in her conclusion jumping as Seren had originally thought. But, honestly, Casey... Imagining her being in love with Casey made her smile slightly. It was obserbed, however amusing. Casey was like, for lack of a better comparison, a father figure.
She smiled happily, enjoying the hug for a moment before pulling back, quickly checking the man over for any injuries. When she didn't find any Seren gave a little nod. At least he'd kept himself in one piece this time - good!

"Get in from where?" Seren asked, but didn't really expect an answer. Casey didn't often discuss his plans with her.

"... You slave driver, you!"

The flinch was instant. Seren didn't mean it, it wasn't intentional, just... Unavoidable. She didn't feel the swell of panic, which was an improvement, more a surge of embarrassment. Instead of continuing to stand awkwardly as Casey more than likely realised what he had said, Seren turned back. She focused her attention on her potion supplies and began to tidy them away.
"I've been kept busy. I'm trying to improve on my feeling skills but potions are hard..."
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by: Casey Winslow
Seren flinched. Wait a moment. Why did she flinch? Realization dawning on his face, Casey scratched his neck. "Oh," he said. "I, um...I'm sorry." He hadn't meant anything by it. It was just a turn of phrase, one that perhaps shouldn't be in anyone's vocabulary as a joke anymore given the events within their society. He swallowed, grateful that Seren kept conversation moving even if she had abandoned him for her potions supplies. That was marked improvement. He had no doubt that Seren would have previously been reduced to tears or complete silence as she tried to rein them in. Instead, she was focusing to control her emotions but also working to redirect herself. To say he was proud of her progress was an understatement.

Casey leaned against the door frame and crossed his arms as he watched her, figuring this was a good enough post. Where Lucy was leaning against the door, she could keep an eye out for Evie when it came down to it. If Evie was even here. He had a feeling she was striking out on her own a bit in regard to Trevor or simply feeling a little lost without direction given the fact Trevor had abdicated before they had moved forward with their plans. He couldn't blame her, yet he was decidedly happy Trevor wasn't in the picture even if it did leave Julian's whereabouts even more of a mystery to him. Before, at least Evie had known.

"Yeah," Casey said, forcing his focus to the present. "We had a right git of a potions master back in my day. Snape?"

Lucy grimaced. "Don't even get me started on that man. Greasy hair, greasy skin, pale like the little dungeon rat he was."

"Yet a good ally later in life."

Lucy nodded, grinning.


"Just thinking about all the times he must have saved your arse with Voldemort. That's all."

"Cheeky!" He was laughing.

"Is it really? I mean, we all know between the drinking and the pregnancy..." She jabbed Casey in the ribs.

"Fair enough." Casey sighed. "Evie here?" he asked, glancing over his hsoulder.

"Haven't seen her all day."

"Convenient." At Lucy's raised brow, he added, "For us, I mean. We're proceeding forward without her, and that's going to mean we need both of you."
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by: Seren Weavers
It was easier just to ignore the apology and continue just distracting herself, at least in Seren's mind. She kept her eyes on her her potion supplies as she stacked them carefully into the leather medical bag. They slotted in together with a satisfying clinking sound, it was easier to focus on that rather than the knot in her stomach. Although, luckily, it did seem to seep away rather quickly. In fact, by the time all Seren's little jars and packets were sorted away, her stomach was pretty much back to normal. Once the clasp was fastened Seren settled herself on the warehouse floor, legs crossed and longs strands of hair tucked behind her ears.

The easy back and forth of the pair made her smile. There was an easiness to their tiny family which was relaxing to listen too, it was a novelty which Seren was still enjoying. Even if she never had it herself, watching Casey and Lucy banter back and forth left Seren with a happy little glow.

The easy atmosphere didn't last though, it never seemed too... As Casey's words Seren's smile froze on her face, tenceness sliding into her joints.
"That's going on?"
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by: Casey Winslow
Casey took a deep breath as he once again glanced over his shoulder. Lucy herself looked past Casey as though making doubly sure there were no signs of movement or sound. Casey looked at Seren after a moment and sighed. "Well," he said, his arms crossed as his eyes focused on the bottom of the door frame across from him momentarily before looking back to Seren, "I'm sure you've gathered this is a resistance group of sorts. We've gone unnoticed largely due to the meticulous nature of our planning, but some of our members are becoming restless. And recently, I've had reason to doubt Evie's faculty to carry through on her end of the bargain. Her obsessions put her at direct odds with the end game for many of the members. A few weeks ago, I had words with another who felt similarly to me, and we're deciding to pull ahead with the assistance of the Order. We're meeting with Kara shortly, but once we do, I have no doubt it will only be a short time before we strike."

Casey paused, meeting Lucy's eyes briefly. Her face was drawn, serious, but there was also worry there in her eyes. She was the one to break eye contact, and Casey didn't force the issue. Instead, he looked back to Seren and walked over to the chair to sit down and be at least a little more level with Seren. He wanted to make sure she understood and that she wasn't forcing back her own voice in this. She did have one, after all. There was by no means any reason she had to help in this. At minimum, though, it would likely affect where she stayed--whether here or at the safe house.

"The Order has healers, yet none of them are as proficient as we would like to use on the ground. Lucy's agreed to come back when we need. She'll be on the ground during battle, helping keep the wounded alive until we can get them further help. I'd like her to head back today." Lucy nodded when Casey met her eyes. "But for you? It's up to you what you would like to do. You don't have to help at all if you don't feel you are ready, but I really do hope you'd like to come back with us. We have a safe house we utilize as a base with added security measures to keep everyone inside safe."
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by: Seren Weavers
The atmosphere seemed to shift. The ball of anxiety which had been loosening suddenly froze. Seren's eyes glanced over to Lucy, hoping for a clue as to what was going on, but when she was met with only a tense, serious gaze, she looked at to the man in front of her. Discomfort prickled down her back, mixed with apprehension, as the understanding her life here was about to change forever sunk in. Life in the warehouse had been the most settled, kind place, Seren had been since she was 10 years old. She didn't want that to change...

Casey confirmed her fears in a few short sentences. This was over. Sanctuary was over. It would never of lasted. Seren should have known that. Nothing lasted forever. Especially not kindness.
Seren's eyes dropped to her fingers. She wove them together in her lap, focusing on the movements instead of the rising tension in her stomach. It was the unknown which Seren didn't cope well with. Tell her the bad was coming? That was easier to deal with than uncertainty. The gaps Casey left allowed Seren's imagination to run wild, it was impossible to stop it.
"What..." She swallowed, still avoiding the gaze of those in the room, "What would you have me do?"
He wanted her to help, Seren could ready between the lines. Sure he said there was a safe house but could she really believe that the offer would still be there if she refused to help? That seemed unlikely.
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by: Casey Winslow
Casey shook his head as Seren asked her question, and he vaguely heard Lucy say, "Oh no, sweetie," as he moved to sit beside her on the ground. The chair felt too high suddenly, too authoritative. The ground was cold, unfeeling, but he needed to be eye level with her, to be in a position of equality rather than one that could subliminally be read as or mistaken for one of authority. Seren had seemed to believe she had to do to receive ever since he'd brought her here. Lucy had told him how she had needed to work with Seren to gain rapport so she didn't believe that was the case, yet Seren had been helping.

"You can do anything you want," he said as he settled onto the ground. "If you really wanted to, you could stay here with Evie. If not, there's the safe house, like I said. You can go there with us and find reprieve. When everything's going on, you can stay there and help the healers there when we bring everyone in or simply stay in your room, pretending none of it is happening. You could--"

"You could watch Bella," Lucy interjected, and Casey looked up at her. She was meaning it as a suggestion based on her body language. Her arms were crossed and she was worrying her lip. Still, she moved to sit on the other side of Seren.

Casey cast an imperturbable charm on the door as she did so since neither of them were now watching for Evie. He'd rather they not have any unwanted eavesdroppers.

Lucy wrapped an arm around Seren's shoulders as she crossed her legs. "If you want to, of course. She's sweet. She'd be..." Lucy's eyes seemed to water slightly, but Casey said nothing nor did anything. "She'd be three now. My baby would be three now. As of last month." She swallowed but seemed to compose herself well enough.

"Honestly," Casey said, "one of my nephews is watching Bella, and from what I saw, they have plenty of healers at the safe house. So, if you wanted to just hide in your room alone, that would be perfectly fine too. We just want you to feel comfortable."

Lucy seemed to think a moment before adding, "I'd stay here with you if I could, Seren, but Sam... If there's any chance he's alive... I need to be there."
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by: Seren Weavers
Seren felt, rather then saw, they pair move around her. Her eyes glued themselves hands as she waited to hear whatever her fate was going to be. It had been good for too long, Seren could see that now. Too good, too safe, things like this never lasted, not her her anyway.

But then Lucy was next to her and then Casey was in front. Their voices were low and gentle as they laid out the options for Seren as they saw them. The young girl shook her head in the negative at the option of staying here with Evie. She knew that wasn't a good option. Evie nothinged her at best and actively disliked her at worst. Staying here with Evie would not be good.

So that left going... Seren listened as Casey laid out the different pathways Seren could take. Support the healers or hide or... Look after Bella.

Seren finally glanced up as Lucy slid her arm around her shoulders. Lucy was trying her best to keep her emotions under control, but Seren could see the tears brimming just beneath the surface. She didn't know much about Bella, and hadn't liked to ask and pry. Lucy had been so good to her after all, she didn't want to repay her by bringing up difficult memories.

Finally Seren nodded, lip firmly between her teeth. The thought of Britain terrified her. For the first time she would be moving back towards the life she'd tried so hard to forget, but she didn't want to let them down. Casey and Lucy had been so good to her, it was time for her to do the same.
"When..." Seren looked from one face to the other, "When do we leave?"
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by: Casey Winslow
"This evening if you like," Casey replied. She was dissociating a bit, wasn't she? Trying to keep her feelings buried and put on a brave front. There were tells people had, tells that if one looked were there to some extent. He wouldn't call her on it, though. She didn't need that, did she? Of course not. This was hard enough without being forced into dealing with a part of all this that she didn't want to address at this very moment. "I have a meeting with Kara and Ianto. Ianto and I are trying to get allies together, to make this happen sooner and with more certainty. If Kara agrees...." His eyes were on Lucy, who nodded and cleared her throat lightly, bringing a finger up to her eye to wipe a wayward single tear.

"Or we could leave tomorrow morning. Whatever will make this easier for you. I know it probably won't be regardless, but I'll do everything I can." He'd be near her this way. There wouldn't be that gap or worried evenings. Except the day of the battle, and Casey had every intention of making it home. There was little more to do now. If he got younger Julian home, he could try to rectify that situation, find some way to deal with the way sitting back and letting other people situate the new political climate in favor of working on his relationship with his son and maintaining one with Seren.
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by: Seren Weavers
This evening... Seren let out a slow breath. Her world had seemed to concrete this morning, so firm... So how could it feel like was falling out from under her now? Nothing ever lasts... The traitorous part of her mind reminded her. Nothing good is forever.
But she didn't have a choice, not really. She wanted to stay with Casey and Lucy, if not the rest of the Isis, so she had no choice. Besides, she wouldn't get in the way of Lucy and her child. Seren would never get in people's way when it came to family. She didn't have one, but others deserved what was impossible for her. Seren had briefly wondered whether she might somehow be welcomed into the Winslow clan, but the mention of the real Winslow children reminded her of the dream's impossibility. They were a real family with real children to look after. Seren could never compete, not that she would want to.

"Should I pack then?" Seren swallowed around the thick emotions which coated her throat, "The medical supplies and potion ingredients..?"
She stood, eyes glued to the floor instead of either adult in front of her. Instead of waiting to be, for lack of a better term, dismissed, Seren turned and scurried for the door. She was going to cry, she could feel it coming, and for that she wanted to be alone.
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by: Lucy Winslow
Lucy could tell Seren was getting emotional. Perhaps she should have prepared her more for this moment, but she hadn't counted on it being so sudden. She hadn't exactly counted on Casey suddenly re-allying with the Order either. She'd thought they would remain here until the attack until the moment Casey had mentioned talking with Kara about things and something about Ianto. He'd been vague, seemingly nervous about how things could go, especially if Evie were to find out, and what that could mean for her and Seren. Lucy had counted on having to leave at a moments' notice with Seren but under entirely different circumstances.

Seren was flighty right now, though, so going to offer a hug or words of consolation would do little good at the moment. Her question was obviously a way to get away for a moment to herself and Lucy nodded, though she wasn't entirely certain Seren had seen her nod or simply had decided to make a quick get-away. "Go have your meeting, Casey. We'll be ready when you get back."

((Consider this done and start a new thread at some point in the Order? Or would you like to continue a while between Lucy and Seren. I'm game either way!))
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